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via: toothpaste for dinner

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Wow. It has been a while. I have been really busy lately. Beyond busy actually. Teaching, studying, working as a Community Manager….which brings me to the topic of this post. Brand reputation being built by the consumers.  Advertisers are facilitating these conversations in many cases, but really, it is the consumer who is telling fellow consumers whether or not a product or service is worthy. The on-line community that I have been ‘managing’ is Glade, [the fragrance people], and through a bit of Grassroots facilitating [Facebook, Twitter, Review Blogs etc.], the community is growing, people are talking and word is getting out. 

But there is a surprising entry into the world of word of mouth. A bank.  The UK Bank – First Direct – has created a new website that aggregates live comments about the brand from eight million social media sites.

“Our customers are writing about us all over the web and we want to embrace this, so we’re showing customer comments, good and bad, from websites, blogs and forums for everyone to see,” says Lisa Wood, head of marketing at First Direct.

A brave effort. Not all of the comments are positive. It is still a bank after all. This is the first bit of innovation seen in the banking industry in a very long time. By letting consumers know that they are willing to be transparent, to show the good, the bad and the ugly as told by the consumers, they are building trust in an industry that has lost all trust. 

Research conducted by First Direct, indicated that we now trust online strangers to help us make many of our everyday decisions. Consumers are turning to online review websites and comparison sites rather than listening to sales people. 

Graham Jones, an internet psychologist who specialises in the way people use the internet, explains:  “As we become more open, so our expectations change towards the way we communicate with businesses.  This new age of openness demands an honest and transparent approach and the rules of engagement are changing.  The research clearly showed that one of the major drivers for people sharing their opinions online was a feeling of power, of having a voice both to promote good and lambast bad customer experiences.  Businesses need to understand this and adapt accordingly.” 

And more and more businesses are. They have to if they want to compete in the ‘Age of Openness.’ 


 

Just some random ffffound images that I like…

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17Love this new blog, ‘The People Of Walmart’. It’s like Jerry Springer meets The Trailer Park Boys…wrapped up into one disturbing blog.

Not sure what’s more entertaining…the photos or the captions!  Enjoy!

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OK…I may be a little late on this one.  But, If I have just seen this, then I am guessing there are others out there on the ‘Interweb’, that have yet to be exposed to Zach and his missing ‘boy parts’.

He didn’t just lose his parts, he gained ‘girl parts’.
I guess I should start with a little warning. This is not for the easily queasy! I know some boys who just do not want to hear about ‘girl things’. If you are one of those, I won’t be offended if you stop reading this post now.

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“Guys would understand that yes, getting your period sucks. But it’s what makes a woman a woman. And it’s what makes people fear that woman when she’s PMSing. Guys, you need to get your period. And you need to get it now.”

What am I talking about? Not really sure what to say about this one, or how to say it!  Tampax has a viral online campaign geared at, well…not sure who its aimed at.  Zach is 16, and through his blog and Twitter feeds, he tells us the story of how one day his world changed. From being one where he couldn’t find things in the fridge, left his wet towel on the floor, had conversations about beer, didn’t call back…to a world of sensitivity, multi-tasking, yoghurt eating, baking brownies, and water retention.  Poor Zach.

Watch the mini movie, read his Tweets, and the blog comments. Tampax is getting people talking if nothing else. And really, that is the purpose of any online campaign.

Who knows…this just may encourage boys to enter into a drugstore for their girls Tampax, without feeling humiliated. 

“By “going out into the world,” I mean putting on a disguise (a pair of sunglasses) and taking the bus to a drugstore in the next town over. I spent the first 16 years of my life avoiding the feminine protection aisle but there I was, reading the backs of packages, comparing features. Anti-slip grip? Check. Built-in leak protection. Check.”

Maybe.

alltogethervia: Public School

banner_biggerWow. These are beautiful bikes. Custom built by a guy named Ezra, with a company called ‘Fast Boys Cycles
Some have bamboo handle bars, some are ‘assless’, they always sport a logo in the shape of a friendly heart and come loaded with personality. bobsled-on-fire

He states clearly and without apology…“Your right to micro-manage the project: $500 extra. All manner of stainless bits and pieces are available too, but I’ll warn you now: I don’t polish. That’s just hours of my life that I’ll never get back.”

Ezra has a great blog too.  He was diagnosed with cancer in August and has been chronicling his battle on a blog he calls ‘fuck cancer, i’m Ezra…teaching cancer to cry’
He doesn’t hold back, he’s honest and funny. Oh…and makes a mean bike.

I think you’ll want one too.

 

Marc Johns

Marc Johns

via:  marcjohns

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Social Media…”unlocking the awesome potential of behavioral disorders.”
Looks like Twitter is the ‘sweet spot’.

The Social Media Venn Diagram Tee from Despair, Inc….

via: noquedanblogs

Tiny Art Director, is one of the best blogs I have seen in a while…an artist uses his 4 year old daughter as his ‘tiny art director’.
She tells him what to draw, he usually does it wrong…he re-does it and hopes for the job status ‘approved’.

Here’s an example of their combined efforts…

© Bill Zeman

© Bill Zeman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Brief: A mama snail and a baby snail
The Critique: I’m sorry to say that you’re worser than me. You gotta learn to draw as me. You just don’t draw so well. Why do you think that is? It turns out that I’m the good draw-er. It turns out that you’re the art director.
Artists Note: The critique is on the initial sketch, and compares to hers. She actually likes the painting.
Job Status: Provisionally Approved, pending addition of jumping fish in the lake

A collection of  Bill Zeman’s work will be published about this time next year, in the meantime, read his blog!

[thanks David]


@jjthinkinbig tweets